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    hi,

    for cancer/tumours to occur does there typically have to be a mutation of both the tumour-suppressor genes and the proto-oncogenes, or is simply a mutation of one of them enough to lead to uncontrollable cell division?
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    Most tumours involve mutations in several genes in the same cell (in the region of 5-7 perhaps) rather than just the one and I imagine this is often a combination of TSGs and POGs (and DNA repair genes).

    However, were you to have mutations in several TSGs, without any mutations in POGs, this would be sufficient to cause a tumour just because the normal, healthy proliferative processes of the cell would be unregulated. Likewise, having several POG mutations would swamp the suppressive ability of TSGs, causing the cell to divide in spite of tumour suppression. So yeah, I reckon they could be problematic individually.

    Just to add in case you didn't know: for a tumour-suppressor mutation to cause cancer you'd need to be homozygous for the mutation (because TSG mutations are recessive), while for a proto-oncogene only one allele needs to be mutated. So cancer arising from spontaneous POG mutation is more likely, unless an individual has inherited a predisposition in the form of one TSG allele that is already mutated.
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    thanks
 
 
 

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